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Edgar and Ingri Parin d'Aulaire papers

Identifier: CLRC-123

Scope and Contents

The collection contains illustrative materials for 12 titles published between 1932-76. Materials include lithograph illustrations and prints, illustration proofs, studies, a watercolor sketch, a dummy, and a poster. The collection also contains 10 lithograph stones for the title The Terrible Troll-Bird, and some miscellaneous artwork consisting of lithographs, a birth announcement for one of their sons, and a pencil and ink with wash illustration. The materials are arranged by title.


  • 1932-1976


Language of Materials


Access and Use:

Collection is open for researchers with no restrictions. Registration with the collection is required.


This collection is protected by the Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, U.S. Code). It is the user's responsibility to verify copyright ownership and to obtain all necessary permissions prior to the reproduction, publication, or other use of any portion of these materials.

Biographical Sketch

Edgar Parin d'Aulaire was born 9/30/1898 in Munich, Germany. He studied art in Germany and France, including a stint under Henri Matisse, and later worked as a book illustrator in Germany during the 1920s. During his studies in Munich he met the Norwegian-born art student Ingri Mortenson (born Ingrid Mortenson on 12/27/1904 in Konsberg, Norway). They were married in 1925 and immigrated to the United States in 1929. During their long careers the d'Aulaires published over 20 picture books for children beginning with the The Magic Rugin 1931. Several of their early books, such as Ola(1821) and East of the Sun and West of the Moon(1938) deal with Norwegian life and folklore. Critics praised these books and others for the couple's simple, childlike illustrations and northern landscapes. During the 1930s they shifted their interest to American history and in 1939 published Abraham Lincoln, a biography of Lincoln for children. This book won the 1940 Caldecott Medal. They also wrote several other biographies of famous Americans, including George Washington(1936), Pocahontas(1946), and Buffalo Bill(1952). They steeped themselves in the subject and locale of their books, and this showed in their illustrations. Each also brought unique talents to their work: Edgar had a flair for drama and Ingri a sense of humor and a strong understanding of children. In 1970 they were awarded the Regina Medal from the Catholic Library Association for their contribution to children's literature. Ingri died on 10/24/80, and Edgar died on 5/1/86.

Biographical sources: Something About the Author, vol. 5, 24, 47, 66; Children's Literature Review, vol. 21; Twentieth Century Children's Writers, 3rd Ed. pp. 265-266.


3 Cubic Feet (3 boxes, 10 lithograph stones)


Collection focuses on the couple's work as illustrators of children's books. Collection contains illustrative material for 12 titles published between 1932-76. Illustrative materials include lithograph illustrations, lithograph prints, illustration proofs, studies, a watercolor sketch, a dummy, and a poster. Collection also contains ten lithograph stones for the title The Terrible Troll-Birdand some miscellaneous artwork consisting of lithographs and a pencil and ink with wash illustration.

Physical Location

See Detailed Descriptions for Each Title Item for Box Locations

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Part of the collection was given to Dr. Kerlan who in turn donated it to the University of Minnesota. The d'Aulaires gave additional material to the University in 1968, with more placed on permanent loan from 1976-79.
Edgar and Ingri (Mortenson) Parin d'Aulaire Papers
Jim Eyer, edited by Caitlin Marineau
9/2/03; updated 8/22/2014
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Description is in English

Collecting Area Details

Contact The Children's Literature Research Collections Collecting Area

Suite 113, Elmer L. Andersen Library